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The Pain - "The Pain" (CD/EP)

The Pain - "The Pain" CD/EP cover image

"The Pain" track listing:

1. Pain
2. Going Home
3. Question The Reflection
4. Bail You Out
5. Say Goodbye
6. I Ran

Reviewed by on February 8, 2010

"If you're looking for no-nonsense New York-style rock, you'll want to experience 'The Pain.'"

If you like hooky groove metal delivered with a John Bush-style rasp in the vocals, "The Pain" will be a pleasure for you to listen to. It's loud, fast, and to-the-point in an oh-so-New York kind of way.

The Pain is a power trio consisting of Leo Curley on guitars and vocals, Bob Horvath on bass and Gregory Nash on drums. Instrumentally, there's nothing that's going to blow your mind here, but that's not the point. The point is to get you into moshing straight off the bat, and the band succeeds admirably at that.

"Pain," the opening track has a slow Pantera groove and plenty of attitude. Curley reminds me quite a bit of both Phil Anselmo and the aforementioned John Bush, knowing when to kick his voice into a scream and when to keep things more on the melodic side without ever losing toughness.

"Going Home" almost sounds like it could be an outtake from Anthrax's "We've Come For You All." It's a shade faster, with a hint CBGB punk wafting in the background, and an unfortunately covered-up brief guitar solo from Curley.

"Question The Reflection" shows off the band's ability to alternate between slow and fast. It's got a grinding riff that morphs into punk rock in the choruses to great effect.

"Say Goodbye" is a good showcase for Horvath's bass-playing, but is otherwise the weakest track on the EP. It's not terrible, but I found myself losing interest pretty quickly.

The next track made me laugh out loud initially — but I never stopped banging my head, and in the end, I had to admit, it rocked mightily. That track? A metal cover of Flock of Seagulls' "I Ran." You know, "And I ran, I ran so far awaaaayyyy ..." I love an unexpected cover song, and this is definitely a keeper.

On the downside, sometimes the production, especially on Gregory Nash's drums, isn't the greatest. The album sounds a little on the tinny side, but not so much that it ever made me want to stop listening.

Groovy riffs and great vocals are the order of the day here, and that's never a bad thing. If you're looking for no-nonsense New York-style rock, you'll want to experience "The Pain."

Highs: The unlikely cover "I Ran," as well as "Going Home" and "Pain."

Lows: Production is a bit on the tinny side.

Bottom line: Good groovy metal that gets right to the point.

Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls
3.5 out of 5 skulls

Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)